My name is Isabella de la Houssaye. I’m a 56 year old mother of five, business owner (materialculture.com), and endurance athlete, and I was diagnosed two years ago with Stage IV lung cancer. I had never smoked, didn’t drink alcohol, and lived a healthy and active lifestyle. I had an annual health checkup several months prior to my diagnosis and was told I was the picture of health.
By the time my cancer was diagnosed, it had spread from my lungs into my pelvis, spine, brain, sternum and adrenal gland. Yet, I didn’t have symptoms other than back pain and mild dizziness and none of my doctors suspected lung cancer, even though it is the most common cancer worldwide. It was finally diagnosed with an MRI that was ordered for what was believed to be a sports injury in January 2018. Following my diagnosis, I had mutation testing to determine my treatment options. This testing was instrumental in determining my treatment. I have been blessed with access to outstanding medical care and the targeted therapy I take daily has, for the most part, kept my cancer from progressing.
Prior to being diagnosed, I had embraced yoga, meditation and mindfulness practices to help navigate many of life’s stresses. Those practices have been instrumental in helping me accept and make the most of my new life with cancer. I’ve included links to programs and practices that people may find useful in the Thrive section of this website and I would encourage everyone, patient and non-patient alike, to take a look.